Tuesday, September 23, 2008

coincidence

i've been shopping a lot lately, probably more than i should have. since i live on the northeast side, i shop on the northeast side too. i guess i'm a regular at lloyd center, jantzen beach, and the new airport way shopping area, all of which have Ross Stores. interestingly enough, in the last month, i've been inside all 3 of those stores. today, while i was at the jantzen beach Ross, i came to the realization: all three of those stores have a big, dark skinned black man standing in front wearing a "loss prevention" jacket. not necessarily security, but loss prevention.

if portland had a high number of black people, i probably wouldn't have given it a second thought. but is it a coincidence that the three Ross stores in northeast portland have a tall, dark skinned black man for their "loss prevention"? what does that say about Ross?

is the typical shopper afraid of a big black man standing in the front of the store-so intimidated that they will think twice about stealing? or did the store choose to hire a big black man because [they think] he can run fast and catch a thief? or is there a high number of black shoplifters that the store thinks will suddenly grow a conscience when they see 'one of their own' protecting the store? i'm not sure what to make of it.

granted, we all know that a large black man is more intimidating (to white people) than a large white man. even a lanky, nice looking black man (like the ones working at Ross) will be "scarier" than a big, mean, burly white man. we know this. i guess i'm just wondering what Ross' reason is for making sure they ALL (at least on my side of town) have black men guarding the store.

(not that i'm complaining about black men being employed! this is good!)

11 comments:

Anonymous said...

I live in Seattle, and the two Ross stores that I frequent have big black security guards. I was also visiting my mom in Northern California, and what do I see when we walk into Ross? A BIG BLACK security guard. Coincidence? I don't think so.

It is really sad to think that having a big black man at their door will protect them. To be quite honest, It makes me not want to even go into the store.

Anonymous said...

I wonder if they contract with a black owned security service to try to balance their workforce? They don't list "loss prevention" as a job option on their website which makes me think it might be a contract position.

Why do you think Black men are more intimidating than say, Asian women? I mean that is the stereotype, but why do people buy into it?

Jcanguy said...

I don't know if I "buy into" the stereotype of big black men being are being sought out for security reason. It maybe a low paying job that not many educated high income earners want to get into hence the one black guy that applied got it. It seems rather ironic though to have a black loss prevention personel in a majority black area where stealing maybe rampant what if security guard wont bother worrying about one of his "brothas" or "sistas" getting a suit of clothes to wear for the big night out? Something to consider!

Anonymous said...

You seem to over think things a lot. Security guards usually are black and latino. Is is just a low wage job like cashier or delivery guy that many whites don't do.

lincolnperry said...

Once again your posters dont get it, Its another variation on the plantation buck, You are right...why not a large light skinned brother. No because these brothers are associated with being brutes and their presence are meant to be intimidating!

WithOxygen said...

I think it is because he is a large black man. Celebrities do it all the time. Look at some celeb photos and you will see a big black security guard. As a matter of fact their is a website called big black security.com

Anonymous said...

Ever wonder why muslim (or at least they appear to be) and middle easterners are at the windows of the Smart parks in Portland? Every single one.

I think it's relatives hiring relatives, a common practice years ago. Could be a similar situation at Ross and of it is, groovy. Keep it in the family.

Hey TBG I cannot believe you haven't posted a damn thing about this election yet. There is so much to say around it. Where ya been?

TBG said...

last anon, where have i been? reveling in the excitement of obama winning just as everyone else is. i try to keep my blog issues local, although i may get my two cents in at some point. politics is such a slippery slope and once you start you can go on and on. politics just doesn't really fit the scope of this blog, that's all.

Anonymous said...

I find this really interesting as I do work as Loss Prevention for Ross in the Portland area (being a large white male myself). The simple answer as to why you see big dark skinned men more often is simply that's who comes in and applies. Most of the white people I've seen try for the job seem to either want to just beat people up or don't pass the background checks. Management goes for people who are level headed, have no criminal background, and make people think twice about stealing. If you do see a small white guy working "loss prevention" (switched from security as it seems more customer friendly) he's probably switched over from another position as security is one of the higher paying jobs in the store.

Anonymous said...

i know this is old but i just saw a large black guy at the front of bed bath and beyond in dc last night. i didnt think much of it other than, "damn, that dude is big"

Anonymous said...

"even a lanky, nice looking black man (like the ones working at Ross) will be "scarier" than a big, mean, burly white man."

No, I'd DEFINITELY be more scared of the burly white man.

Maybe more black men apply for those types of jobs because on average, they are less likely to have a college education than the average white man (just using statistics here, not trying to generalize).